September 28thSuddenly the weather is amazing, shorts and tee's and c'mon why do we need underwear again? The flowers are bursting forth at Ailsa Craig and the vegetable patch is looking good. Mercury might well be in retrograde but a few minutes outside and the universe seems pretty damn fine.
OK why does 'Lost In Space' box set on Bluray only have a USA release.? The price is now 3 times that of it's pre-order price. Phew! Add to that our piss weak Australian dollar and it sure is a lot. Think we'll wait that one out. I love that first season and still the best saucer crash in sci fi history!
September 29thThe power is off again today, they are still doing massive line work up here before bushfire season hits us. Annoying though as it was 4 hours later then expected - I was fine but it shits the hell out of Mark. I keep saying Kalorama looks great lit by candle light. Thankfully it was a nice day so we took the mobile office up onto the decking and worked on Neil Finn stuff outside.
We took a few hours off and stripped ourselves back to singlets and worked in the garden. Determined to clear this area near "little lawn" before Summer arrives. It's a really beautiful space and will look amazing when finished.
September 30thHead to Ferntree Gully today and take a mate to hospital for some scans- we are good neighbours. I find a free park right by the door , the parking goddess was smiling. Our buddy Isabelle's birthday soon so I go to this little specialist shop and grab her a cute "angel". I such at birthdays but this one popped into my head. So parcel off to France today.
Rocktober 1stYes October becomes Rocktober. Well Skyhooks are back and having a play at The Palais Rockwiz gig - Red, Fred, Greg & Bongo . We decide to keep the lead singer a super secret - so some surprise -in 2015 it's such a "must know now" culture. We all know this will be leaked today, and I'll be part of the leak - thankfully not instigated by me but most certainly encouraged. Mainly because I want Skyhook fans to have a chance to see these 4 guys play again , it happens so rarely and almost never under the Skyhooks banner.
I expected some press agency to run with it but a total surprise just how excited some got. I put a basic piece on the website and the media grabbed it. It was good for traffic too both website and Skyhooks facebook page. The Rockwiz people are also giving some money from tickets/merchandise to "Support Act" who do good work. They want all the Hall Of Fame people/bands printed on the back of Tshirt/tea towel and I contact all the Enz guys to get the OK. I hear from all but 1 so it goes ahead.
October 2ndPublic Holiday in Victoria. The "new" public holiday, I guess it's another election promise kept. It's a nice time of year up here, lots of families on the mountain having BBQ's and hiking about.
We head off and do our supermarket shopping, and cruise along to Dans and get a bottle of Benedictine. Sweet!
Lots of Skyhooks phone chat going on, offers coming in to do night #2 with another aussie singer. I doubt the band will do it , in some ways it's nice to keep this reunion a one off , makes it more special.
October 3rdA glorious Saturday so I'm working in the vegetable patch. Tomatoes in, zucchini , chilli's and ten million potatoes. It's only a small vegetable patch but it seems to be the right one for sunshine. We always end up with a great harvest. I have a compost bin in the corner so scraps etc go into that , so guessing it feeds the soil - as it is a happy growing area. There is nothing better then picking fresh vegetables.
October 4thDaylight savings commences, I always feel crappy on Day 1- Nellys coffee doesn't help.
I make an effort today to start cleaning out the gutters, I take a safety rope with me, that roof is crazy. You'd think we live in Switzerland , it would be perfect for snowy climates. So steep.
Finally got to watch "Boyhood" on Foxtel, what a great movie, filmed over a 12 year period with the same actors. Very cool.
October 5thMonday is great for lunch here, chicken schnitzel baked in the oven, fresh salad from our garden, organic cheese and mango chutney on home made bread! It's pretty good.
5.45 today a small nightmare call around music stuff but it all falls into line. Maybe history can record it later on ...one of those (Phew) moments. As my finger was on the button to send out a 2 line press release a positive phone call happens. Holy close encounter Batman!
Mr Starkie heads off for his costume fitting, when he says that it makes me smile.
October 6thA very hot, windy and fire weather already. I head on out to check some of the fire safety equipment , good to have it ready, though the 16 litre firefighting backpacks can be heavy after awhile. The trick is not to fill them all the way.
I hear from PBH and the private car park will be open for the band and our cars at The Palais. All is going well.
I always laugh at people on Facebook that put "entrepreneur" for their job description/profile loser -wanker is far closer. As soon as you see that you know they are a dickhead and bullshit artist far better description.
October 7thA few of the band call and the Skyhooks rehearsals at Bakehouse Studios go well. Everyone seems happy so that is a relief. I'll be amazed if the "secret lead singer" moment stays a secret. The Internet is shit that way, sometimes it's really nice to be surprised, I'm amazed the lid has been kept on this as long as it has. A few people get it wrong, mouthing off on Facebook that they know who the singer is and that the band will play one song. They love to think they are in the know, but end of the day they really are not. Best thing is to ignore such things.
I hear from our friends sister and good news hospital wise, and same around something else, so far a really good day with nothing but good news.
October 8thI leave the mountain half an hour early, and manage a quick swim on the way to the Palais. The ocean is just great and after a few minute I am recharged. Of course I'll smell oif the sea for most of the night, unless I can get a quick shower at the Theatre, or not. People will walk by backstage saying "Oh i can smell the bay from here", no it's just me! Captain Salty!
All the band members arrive on time, and happy they can just walk in through the security door. Good to see these guys and their families.
I head out to the ticket office and make sure all the comps are in their envelopes and after show passes secured. The ticket girl is great, and we both have the same system for our ticketing, so that's a relief. makes it easier when someone is on the same frequency. I run into Brian and he's so damn excited that the 'Hooks are on the show.
Soundcheck in 10 minutes so all downstairs and a quick stage chat. It's running on time. Great that Duges is doing his thing, it always feels safe when Dugald works with us. Ross Wilson is here and saves the day by being the 11th hour addition. He's in fine form too, singing really well. I take a few rehearsal photos , these get togethers are far and few between so good to document them.
The flyer people arrive with the hand bills for the "Don't You Believe What You've Seen or You've Heard" upcoming Skyhooks release (Oct 30th) so am hoping some of the Rockwiz crowd go home and pre order it.
Bongo has a new stage outfit and unveils it in the band room. Made by our own Sally Crombie, we christen it "The Queen Victoria Lizard Suit"- is this the final transition in a long line of lizard suits? Bobs daughter Indiana turns up so we take a few photos, I've known her since she was born and always a delight top see her. She's now a Mum, so Bob a grandfather. I like that.
Dinner is on downstairs so a mix of musicians and crew , lots of chat and pretty good deserts!!!!!!
Quite a few hours spent in the band room, chat , memories, a nice moment, well for me especially. The Skyhook boys such an important part of Mark and my life, and they have been good to us, so it's nice to return the favour.
I am bolting backstage, and grab Bob. We both can't believe that his wife is on the panel. She made it through the heats and there she is onstage and no one knows she is Bongos other half. I secretly pray she doesn't win, so no one can say it's rigged. I joke to Bob when he's leaving that she spent more time onstage then he did!
I give everyone a 10 minute stage call, take a few photos, Ross turns up so manage a whole 4 shots with him as a "Skyhook". Down the staircase we go , the Rockwiz orchestra do their thing, the lights dim , the smoke rises and out walks Skyhooks and straight into "Horror Movie" . The boys now onstage, I go out front with camera in hand. People are up out of their seats , it's funny some people are moved to tears. It feels a bit surreal being in the audience. The band sound good, it looks good. "Balwyn Calling" moves it up a notch. Some girls near the aisle, grab each other and are on their feet, the ushers don't stop them dancing. I'm all smiles. I head back in, and the song finishes to very loud applause. The 'Hooks are off the stage, Brian is on and the crowd don't need encouragement , a rarity for Rockwiz, an encore. Here they are "Skyhooks.."
The crowd sing a long "All my friends are getting married" and a very vocal audience it is. A standing ovation from The Palais punters. Lots of smiles from the band members (Yes Red I spotted you smiling). It all seemed over way too soon and I escort everyone back upstairs with the crowd still calling for more.
Reds out of the building, he has his radio show, very early in the morning. I walk him to the car, it's a really balmy night in St Kilda. Red Symons has left the building, but not before he adds the final signature to Marks "Living In the 70's" album (thanks Redmond).
The rest of the band join the other guests onstage for a rousing version of SHOUT. Guests wander in backstage and soon the upstairs area is full. I continue my joke with Julia Zemiro that my name is Pierre and I am the new (secret) singer of the band. My french is limited but the gag rolls on. Lots of familiar faces, and fun. Eventually I head off and drop Greg, Fred and Becci back at Mr Maccas house. A call comes in and 6 fans from Sydney are in town so I drive to St Kilda and have coffee with them. They loved it, very happy that Ross sang too. I manage to get home around 3.30, feeling a bit proud of those guys- they played well and a lot of people left the Palais very content.
October 9thSo I feel like crap today, no booze last night, just adrenaline , I worked hard and just need more sleep.
Season 1 set of THE BOX arrives from Crawford Productions. It started in 1974, "The Box" about the uninhibited lives of a group of people who work for fictional TV station channel 12. Aussie drama, and we love seeing Australian fashions, haircuts etc from the mid seventies.
October 10thA friend tells me that Rockwiz are running some of my photos on their page , which is fine, I hope they give me a photo credit? Happy for them to do so. Still awaiting on my wage from them as well.
I'm back in Neil Finn mode, I give his two NZ shows a little bit of a push, they are both close to sold out , it's funny we always seem to get to 95% in NZ and the final 5% is always exhausting, it's a NZ thing I'm sure.
I'm hoping 'Belle's birthday present arrives safely, just a little gift to France, but no word from her so maybe the mail is slow (again).
We have another late night, this time in bed at 4.00. Life is a never ending party. Good to catch up with a host of friends tonight.
October 11thI'm suffering a little today, what was in those cookies? I drive to Mt Dandenong bakery as a good old Aussie pie will be the cure. I can't wait to get home so call into the 5 ways lookout and sit on the bonnet of the 4WD and eat it. Of course half the pie snaps off and lands on the car bonnet! I look about no ones watching so i grab the fallen morsel and devour that too.
Copious amounts of phone silliness with Laura which we both needed, tears and laughter, a good tonic. It starts bucketing down while I am on the phone, that's a serious downpour .
Spend the night with Mark watching all those episodes of "Arrow" that are on the IQ box. A whole season in a few days.
That's all for now, life is exciting and loving it.